The Middlebury Campus

Chance the Rapper Performs

Chance Lyrics Spark Student Animosity by Leah Lavigne

At the age of 20, most people are still thinking about what they want to do when they “grow up.” This is not the case with up-and-coming musician Chancelor Bennett, who is by no definition ‘most people.’ Better known by his stage name Chance the Rapper, the Chicago born hip-hop artist is riding his growing momentum on The Social Experiment Tour, which stops at the College on Nov. 2.

But the concert created as much controversy as excitement, centering around an initial lack of tickets and an ongoing uproar over perceived misogyny and homophobia in his lyrics. In response, the administration asked Chance not to sing the controversial lyric “slap-happy faggot slapper” of “Favorite Song” or use any homophobic terms during his entire performance. According to Dean of the College Shirley Collado, Chance agreed to these terms. Read More

Campus Voice: Taking on Chance by Ian Stewart and Greta Neubauer

Hosts Ian Stewart and Greta Neubauer spoke with Assistant Director of Student Activities Jennifer Herrera, Reem Rosenhaj ’16.5 of Queers and Allies, Day Williams ’15 of Verbal Onslaught, Alex Strott ’15 of Feminist Action at Middlebury and Matt Butler ’15 of the MCAB Concerts Committee about Chance the Rapper’s controversial lyrics, who gets to be on stage at Middlebury College and balancing artistic freedom and community standards. Read More

Chance Brings Energy, Controversy by Chad Clemens

It is Saturday night, roughly 11:50 p.m., and the crowd facing the Chicago-born Chance the Rapper in Nelson Stadium is getting antsy. The show thus far has been nothing if not a tad bizarre, and Chance is running out of concert staples to fill the venue’s echoey crevices. “Smoke Again” and “Juice” have somewhat revived the audience from the lull of slow jams dominating the last twenty minutes, but a sense of restlessness is lingering. Naturally, after a week of intense scrutiny and campus-wide discourse, the question remains: will he play it? The insidious lyric in “Favorite Song” resting neatly within the lush garden that is Chance’s acclaimed LP Acid Rap? Will he defy pleas of the administration and many students on campus?

And then it happened. Chance ran through “Favorite Song” without the hint of censoring. Read More

Chance the Rapper begins singing “Favorite Song”. (middbeat)

Chance Fuels Larger Forum by Nate Sans

Axinn 229 was filled to capacity on Nov. 4, as students, faculty and administrators perched on windowsills and tables after chairs were filled to get an opportunity to participate in “Unpacking Chance the Rapper: Exploring the complexities around Community Standards, Artistic Expression and Academic Freedom.” In the hour and a half discussion that continued after at PALANA House, 26 students, Dean of the College Shirley Collado and two faculty members spoke. Read More



Not a Chance by The Middlebury Campus

Earlier this semester, a Middlebury student found a note threatening violence and sexual assault against her on the basis of her sexual orientation taped to her door. Now, just weeks later, the College prepares to welcome Chance the Rapper, a musical artist who refers to himself as a “slap-happy faggot slapper” in one of his songs. As a community that strives to create a safe and inclusive space for people of all sexual identities, it is unacceptable to give a stage and a microphone to a person who delivers this type of violent and intolerant message. Read More

Take a Chance, MCAB by Adam Benay ‘13.5

A friend on the MCAB Concert Committee wrote to me after middbeat had posted my email, “I love to mess around as much as you do, but saying ‘let’s get these fascists’ doesn’t really allow for an honest discourse that could make the entire process better, rather than immediately trying to make people defensive.” Read More

Stuck on Repeat by Online Editor Stephanie Roush

In light of the current debate surrounding Chance the Rapper’s performance at the College the idea of artistic freedom in conjunction with hip-hop has arisen in a big way. By telling Chance he cannot perform a certain song or say a certain word on our campus, are we not then limiting the very artistic freedom by which we pride ourselves, or is the censorship of Chance necessary in order to create a safe environment for all? Read More

Stop Hearing, Start Listening by The Middlebury Campus

In a classroom packed with people sitting on the windowsills, students, faculty and administrators gathered on Monday to engage in an honest dialogue unpacking the controversy surrounding Chance the Rapper’s performance Saturday night. Read More

Who is Responsible for Rap? by Lucas Avidan

Like many other students on this campus, I went to the Chance the Rapper over the weekend. I danced and yelled and had a great time. I even listened to him perform the controversial lyric in his performance of “Favorite Song.” And so, now that Chance has come and gone, let us assess: what has changed? Read More

The Brother who Cried Black by Nathan Weil and Firas Omar

1: Is the word “faggot” a homophobic slur? 2: That’s an easy question. Yes, it is. 1: Is it homophobic if a Caucasian says it? 2: Yes, it is. 1: Is it homophobic if an African-American says it? 2: Yes, it is. 1: So why, then, do a number of students here at Middlebury believe that Chance the Rapper’s use of the slur was only perceived as homophobic because he was black? That the outcry surrounding his concert was predicated on his race? Read More

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Chance the Rapper Performs